Market Commentary 5/3/2024

Fed Believes Inflation Will Decline Without Further Rate Hikes 

Markets found solace as the Fed committed to returning inflation to 2% without the need for further interest rate hikes. The April Jobs Report was disappointing while jobs growth came in lower than expected, pushing yields on Treasuries and mortgage-related products lower. April non-farm unemployment clocked in at 3.9% up a tick and hourly wage growth cooled, a data point that must stabilize for the Fed to begin lowering rates.  

The economy’s trajectory remains uncertain, compounded by the unprecedented government spending in response to Covid. The influx of funds continues to impact the economy in unforeseen ways, challenging traditional economic models’ predictive accuracy. 

Overall, the economy remains a mixed bag and is a fool’s errand predicting where interest rates and the financial system are headed.  Even the Fed, with a world of data and Ph.D.’s, has been wrong during the last few years. With trillions of dollars moving through our economy, many economic models were not designed to interpret this type of spending with accuracy.     

Keep an eye on the Treasury issuance as the Government has increased the money it will need to borrow for Government funding.  This may put a floor on interest rates overall.  However, for the moment a 10-year Treasury of around 4.50% feels about right given the uncertainty in the world. 

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These are the opinions of the author. For financial advice, please talk to your CPA or financial professional.